[Advaita-l] Did Sankara have non-brahmin disciples?

Venkatesh Murthy vmurthy36 at gmail.com
Mon Oct 18 21:08:39 CDT 2010

On Thu, Oct 14, 2010 at 12:30 AM, Rajaram Venkataramani
<rajaramvenk at gmail.com> wrote:
> Thanks for the responses. My comments and questions
> *Venkatesh* : Why people say Adi Sankara bowed to Candala? This is  politics
> and lies in a bad way.
> *Response*: I dont know if we can blame people for what Sankara Dig Vijayam
> says if it says that Sankara bowed to a candala. In any case, he would not
> have differentiated between a learned and humble brahmana such as you and a
> dog eater noting that the difference is only in the conditioning by the
> modes of nature! Please read the venerable acharya's commentary to Bhagavad
> Gita verse vidya-vinaya-sampanne brahmane gavi hastini suni caiva sva-pake
> ca panditah sama-darsinah.

The Gita verse is not relevant above. Brahman is everywhere in a cow
elephant a dog. Should we bow to a dog as a Guru? This type of logic
is wrong. The Jnani will see Brahman everywhere but will he say every
one is his Guru?

> *Venkatesh*: If we take Adi Sankara meeting Candala when Sankara Digvijaya
> says it we must also take the Candala as Siva in disguise. Here the text
> clearly says he prayed to Siva.
> *Response*: The text is not a glorification of Lord Siva but teaches that
> even if a candala is self-realized, he is to be revered as a guru. Of
> course, one can question the authenticity of the text. Sankaracharya, if he
> did compose Manisha Panchakam, says "If one is convinced firmly, that he is
> that very Soul which manifests itself in all the conditions of sleep,
> wakefulness and dream, in all the objects from the great Brahma (the
> creator) to the tiny ant and which is also the vibrant, but invisible,
> witnesser of all, then as per my clear conclusion, he is the great
> teacher/preceptor, be he a dvija or a candala". So as per the author of this
> verse, not only dvijas (brahmanas, kshatriyas and vaishyas) but even a
> candala can be revered as a guru, if he is a jnani.

Kindly read Sri V Subrahmanian's article . A non Brahmin Guru is
against the scriptures. A brahmin must not learn from him leave alone
Candala.  Manu says a Brahmin can learn from Abrahmana Guru in
exception situations only. Saying a Swami does not have caste is
bogus. If this is true why Swamijis are not willing to crossing oceans
and visit USA? There are rules and regulations for Swamijis also not
only for Gruhasthas. A Brahmin only can claim title of Guru.

The Candala event is for conveying the message Siva wanted to test Adi
Sankara in hunter's disguise like how he tested Arjuna. From the
hunter event in Mahabharata it is wrong to say a Vyadha must be
treated like a great Kshatriya. The hunter event shows greatness of
Siva and Arjuna. Same case the Candala event shows greatness of Siva
and Adi Sankara.



> _______________________________________________
> Archives: http://lists.advaita-vedanta.org/archives/advaita-l/
> http://blog.gmane.org/gmane.culture.religion.advaita
> To unsubscribe or change your options:
> http://lists.advaita-vedanta.org/cgi-bin/listinfo/advaita-l
> For assistance, contact:
> listmaster at advaita-vedanta.org

More information about the Advaita-l mailing list